Q:

What is the difference between distilled water and tap water?

A:

Quick Answer

Tap water is directly supplied from the home faucet, while distilled water is water taken from any source that has gone through a distillation process. Tap water contains compounds, such as iron, chlorine, magnesium and natural minerals, that either are added by the public water system or have gotten in the water supply. Distilled water is in its purest form, with no bacteria or inorganic compounds.

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What is the difference between distilled water and tap water?
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The Environmental Protection Agency regulates the distribution and safety of drinking water. The agency conducts periodic pollutant-specific minimum testing of the public water systems to ensure that the water coming out of the faucets is safe for human consumption. Water contaminants, however, can still enter water supplies if the water travels through poorly maintained distribution systems or through human and animal activities.

Distilled water goes through the oldest form of water treatment and relies on evaporation to remove impurities in the water. The boiling process removes inorganic compounds, such as iron, lead, nitrate and calcium. While distilled water seems a safer choice compared to tap water, the rigid distillation process removes even the necessary nutrients present in drinking water, such as iron and sodium. The distillation process also does not remove organic compounds that have lower boiling points than water, such as benzene and toluene. If the water goes through the process without removing these compounds first, they contaminate the distilled water again.

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Related Questions

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    Is distilled water hypertonic or hypotonic?

    A:

    With regard to osmosis, distilled water will always be hypotonic compared to an aqueous solution containing any amount of a solute. Because distilled water is pure and contains no dissolved substances, an aqueous solution with any concentration of solute will be hypertonic when compared to distilled water. Osmosis is a process based on the concentration of solute contained in two aqueous solutions on either side of a semipermeable membrane, and is not dependent on the dissolved substance.

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    Is distilled water good for you?

    A:

    There are many conflicting reports about whether distilled water is good for humans, as it depends on the source of the water and how often a person drinks it. Distilled water is generally considered entirely safe to drink, as all impurities have been removed.

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    What is the difference between spring water and purified water?

    A:

    According to Mother Nature Network, purified water can be taken from any water source and then purified to remove contaminants and chemicals. Spring water, however, is water taken from a natural spring groundwater source. Spring water may or may not have undergone water treatment.

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    What is the difference between purified and distilled water?

    A:

    The difference between distilled and purified water lies in the process that the water goes through; distilled water goes through one specific process, while purified water can go through a number of different cleaning processes and still have "purified" on the label. The distillation process boils all the contaminants out of water, but purification takes on a number of different guises.

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